Networking Tips for New Photographers
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 9 min read


  1. Build an Impressive Portfolio
  2. Make Connections on Social Media
  3. Attend Industry Events
  4. Offer to Collaborate with Other Photographers
  5. Join Photography Clubs and Groups
  6. Ask for Referrals
  7. Use Client Testimonials
  8. Keep in Touch with Former Clients
  9. Continue to Learn and Improve
  10. Stay Positive and Patient

As a budding photographer, you may be eager to share your creativity with the world. But before you can wow people with your breathtaking shots, there's one important aspect you need to tackle — networking. It's more than just swapping business cards; it's about building relationships, making connections, and learning from others in your field. Here are some practical tips for networking in photography as an entry-level employee to help you navigate this exciting journey.

Build an Impressive Portfolio

Let's start with the basics: your portfolio. It's your calling card in the photography world — a visual resume that showcases your skills, style, and talent. Here are a few pointers to make your portfolio stand out:

  • Quality over quantity: Include only your best work. It's better to have a dozen stunning photos than hundreds of average ones.
  • Variety is the spice: Showcase a range of subjects and techniques. This shows you're versatile and can adapt to different shooting conditions and requirements.
  • Tell a story: Arrange your photographs in a way that tells a narrative. This makes your portfolio more engaging and memorable.
  • Update regularly: As you learn and grow as a photographer, so should your portfolio. Regularly update it with new shots that reflect your current skills and style.
  • Go digital: Having an online portfolio is one of the best tips for networking in photography as a entry-level employee. It makes it easier for potential clients and collaborators to find and view your work. Consider creating a personal website, or use portfolio platforms like Adobe Portfolio or Behance.

Remember, your portfolio should reflect who you are as a photographer. It's not just about displaying your work; it's about showcasing your unique perspective and creativity. So, take your time, put in the effort, and build an impressive portfolio that you're proud to share.

Make Connections on Social Media

Next up on our list of tips for networking in photography as an entry-level employee is utilizing social media. In today's digital age, social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn can be powerful networking tools for photographers. Here's how you can leverage them:

  • Share your work: Post your best photos regularly. This not only showcases your talent but also keeps your work fresh in the minds of your followers.
  • Engage with others: Don't just post your work and disappear. Like, comment, and share posts from other photographers. This not only helps build relationships but also exposes you to different styles and techniques.
  • Join photography groups: These groups can be a goldmine of information and a great way to connect with fellow photographers. Participate in discussions, ask questions, share tips, and provide constructive feedback.
  • Network professionally: LinkedIn is a great platform for making professional connections. Join photography-related groups, participate in discussions, and connect with industry professionals.
  • Use hashtags wisely: Hashtags can help your work get discovered. Use relevant and popular photography-related hashtags to increase your visibility.

Remember, the key to networking on social media is authenticity. Be genuine in your interactions, respect everyone's work, and don't be afraid to show your own personality. After all, photography is all about capturing and sharing unique perspectives, right?

Attend Industry Events

One of the most hands-on tips for networking in photography as an entry-level employee is to attend industry events. These can be local photography exhibitions, workshops, seminars, or even large-scale photography conventions and trade shows. Here's why you should consider attending:

  • Mingle with the Pros: These events attract experienced photographers and industry experts. It's an opportunity to meet them in person, ask for advice, and learn from their experiences.
  • Stay Updated: Industry events often showcase the latest trends, techniques, and equipment in photography. You get a first-hand look at what's new and how you can incorporate it into your work.
  • Showcase Your Work: Some events offer opportunities for new photographers to display their work. This exposure can help you get noticed and increase your credibility.
  • Learn and Grow: Most events include workshops and seminars where you can learn new skills and techniques. Continuous learning is a key aspect of growth in photography.
  • Build Your Network: Meeting and interacting with other photographers can lead to collaborations, job opportunities, and the exchange of valuable industry insights.

So, don't hesitate to mark your calendar and sign up for the next photography event happening near you. It's a step towards effective networking, and who knows, you might even have some fun while you're at it!

Offer to Collaborate with Other Photographers

While forging your path in the photography world, it's beneficial to remember that collaboration often trumps competition. Offering to collaborate with other photographers is not only a great networking tip but a chance for you to learn and grow.

  • Share and Gain Knowledge: Every photographer has a unique style and a different way of viewing the world. Collaborating allows you to learn new techniques and perspectives, helping you expand your creative horizons.
  • Divide and Conquer: Two minds are often better than one, especially when tackling larger projects. Sharing the workload can lead to a more diverse and comprehensive result.
  • Expand Your Network: Collaboration often leads to introductions to other industry professionals, widening your circle and providing more networking opportunities.
  • Boost Your Portfolio: The work you produce through collaborations can add variety to your portfolio, helping you attract a broader range of clients.

Remember, it's not a one-way street. While you seek to learn from others, be open to sharing your knowledge and skills as well. The photography community thrives on mutual respect and learning, so don't shy away from opportunities to collaborate!

Join Photography Clubs and Groups

One of the best tips for networking in photography as a entry-level employee? Jump right in and join photography clubs and groups. These groups are a treasure trove of knowledge, experience, and networking opportunities. Here's why:

  • Learn from the Best: These clubs and groups often have seasoned photographers as members. They've been where you are now, and they're usually eager to share their experiences and tips.
  • Get Feedback: Joining a club or group gives you an audience for your work. Fellow members can provide constructive feedback, helping you improve your skills and develop your signature style.
  • Find Mentorship: As you get to know the members, you might find a mentor—a more experienced photographer who can guide you on your journey.
  • Access Unique Opportunities: Many clubs organize events like photography walks, guest lectures, and even trips. Participating in these activities can provide unique experiences to capture and learn from.

So don't wait—start exploring photography clubs and groups in your area or online. This investment of your time can lead to a wealth of knowledge and connections that can boost your photography career.

Ask for Referrals

Asking for referrals is another of the many tips for networking in photography as an entry-level employee. It might seem a bit daunting at first, but remember, there's no harm in asking! Let's break down the why and how:

  • Why Ask for Referrals: Referrals are a powerful way to build your network. When a satisfied client or a fellow photographer refers you, it's like they're vouching for your skills. This can help you land new clients or collaborations.
  • How to Ask for Referrals: Be polite and professional. After a successful photoshoot or meeting, mention that you're trying to expand your network. Ask if they know anyone who may need your photography services or anyone in the industry who could benefit from connecting with you.

Don't be discouraged if you don't get a referral right away. Networking is a long game. The important thing is to continue producing quality work and building strong relationships. Over time, these efforts will pay off, and the referrals will start coming in.

Use Client Testimonials

Ah, client testimonials. One of the most effective tips for networking in photography as an entry-level employee. But what makes them so significant, and how do you go about obtaining them?

  • Why Use Client Testimonials: Testimonials from pleased clients can be a great asset for you. They provide social proof of your skills and reliability, which can help you attract more clients and build your network.
  • How to Obtain Client Testimonials: After a successful photoshoot, ask your client if they would be willing to provide a testimonial. You could ask them to write a few sentences about their experience working with you and the quality of your photos. Remember, it's best to ask when the experience is still fresh in their mind.

Remember, it's not just about collecting testimonials—it's also about displaying them effectively. Consider creating a section on your portfolio site dedicated to testimonials. This will allow potential clients and collaborators to see the great experiences others have had working with you.

Using client testimonials effectively can help you build your credibility and expand your network in the photography industry. Keep it authentic—let your clients' words speak for your work!

Keep in Touch with Former Clients

Let's move on to another key strategy: keeping in touch with former clients. It's pretty simple, but incredibly effective when it comes to networking in photography as an entry-level employee.

  • Why Keeping in Touch Matters: Your former clients are invaluable resources. They already know your work, and they might need your services again. Plus, they can refer you to their friends, family, or colleagues. The key here is maintaining that relationship, even after the job is done.
  • How to Keep in Touch: There are many ways to maintain contact. You could send them regular updates of your work via email, or wish them on special occasions. Just a simple "Hello, how are you?" can go a long way. However, remember to respect their space and not to overwhelm them with messages.

Don't underestimate the power of a well-maintained relationship. It's not just about getting more work—it's about building a network of people who appreciate your work and are willing to support you. Your past clients can sometimes be your best advocates.

So, there you have it—the art of keeping in touch. It's all about balance: maintaining the connection without being intrusive. With a little bit of tact and persistence, you'll find this is one of the most rewarding tips for networking in photography as an entry-level employee.

Continue to Learn and Improve

Next up on our list of tips for networking in photography as an entry-level employee is the commitment to continuous learning and improvement. In the rapidly evolving field of photography, staying stagnant is not an option.

  • The Importance of Continuous Learning: Whether it's new camera models, updated editing software, or emerging photography trends, there's always something new to learn. By honing your skills and expanding your knowledge, you make yourself more marketable and stay on top of the game. This not only boosts your work quality but also gives you more to talk about when networking.
  • How to Keep Learning and Improving: Attend workshops, enroll in online courses, read photography books, and follow industry leaders on social media. Experiment with new styles and techniques. Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone—that’s where the magic happens!

Remember, every new skill you acquire or technique you master is another feather in your cap—a talking point for your next networking event, an added value for your clients, and a stepping stone on your path to success in the exciting world of photography.

So, pack your bags and set off on this never-ending journey of learning. It's not just a tip for networking in photography—it's a mantra for success in any field. Keep learning, keep improving, and watch as doors start opening for you.

Stay Positive and Patient

As we wrap up our guide of tips for networking in photography as a entry-level employee, let's not overlook the importance of maintaining a positive attitude and patience.

  • Why Positivity Matters: In the world of photography, like any other industry, you'll face your fair share of setbacks and rejections. Maintaining a positive outlook isn't just about keeping your spirits high—it's also about leaving a lasting impression. Remember, positivity is contagious; people are drawn to those who exude a positive aura.
  • The Importance of Patience: Networking isn't a one-time event—it's a process. It often takes time to build meaningful relationships and see tangible results from your networking efforts. You might not land a big client or secure a dream job right away, but don't be discouraged. Patience is key in networking.

So, keep your chin up, stay positive, and be patient. The world of photography is vast and full of opportunities. Every conversation you strike, every connection you make, brings you one step closer to your goals. It's a marathon, not a sprint. Remember, Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither is a successful photography career!

In conclusion, networking in photography as an entry-level employee isn't just about knowing the right people—it's about being the right person. So, stay focused, stay positive, and stay patient. The journey might be long, but the view at the end is worth it.

If you're a new photographer looking to make a name for yourself in the industry, we highly recommend checking out Cyn Lagos' workshop, 'Establishing Yourself as a Photographer in 2023.' This workshop not only covers networking tips but also offers valuable insights on how to stand out in the competitive world of photography. Don't miss this opportunity to learn from a pro and take your photography career to the next level!